COVID-19 Patient Update Page
NOTICE TO PATIENTS – MASKS REQUIRED FOR VISITS TO YOUR DOCTOR’S OFFICE AND THE FAMILY HEALTH TEAM CLINIC:
If you are coming to the clinic/physician office for an in-person appointment you must wear your own mask – exceptions are noted below.
- children under the age of 2 should NOT wear a face mask;
- anyone who is unable to remove them without assistance; or
- anyone who has trouble breathing.
Wearing a mask or other face covering plays an important role in protecting others, like covering your cough and maintaining physical distancing.
Many individuals who come to our physician offices are at a higher risk of complications from the virus (covid-19) so it’s important to protect those who are vulnerable. It’s also important to keep our healthcare professionals and staff healthy so they can remain available to provide care and service.
Due to the importance of preserving medical grade masks for appropriate use by health professionals, we are unable to provide medical grade masks to our patients.
In keeping with recommendations from the federal government – non-medical masks or face coverings should not:
- be shared with others
- impair vision or interfere with tasks
- be placed on children under the age of 2 years
- be made of plastic or other non-breathable materials
- be secured with tape or other inappropriate materials
- be made exclusively of materials that easily fall apart, such as tissues
- be placed on anyone unable to remove them without assistance or anyone who has trouble breathing
More information about the limitations and appropriate use can be found on the following website:https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/prevention-risks/about-non-medical-masks-face-coverings.html
Here are some resources to help you make your own mask or face covering:
• DIY Bandana Face Mask https://youtu.be/zkQq3Iex-qo
• A Doctor Explains How to Make the Safest Face Mask https://youtu.be/W6d3twpHwis
• Cloth mask with pouch https://www.sewcanshe.com/blog/simple-step-by-step-tutorial-for-the-olson-mask-pattern
• See the videos in this news story about how to wear a mask and ways to make your own mask https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/non-medical-masks-covid-19-spread-1.5523321
If you present to the clinic without a mask your appointment may need to be rescheduled.
BEFORE YOU COME TO THE FAMILY HEALTH TEAM OR YOUR PHYSICIAN‘S OFFICE:
• if your appointment is not urgent, think about re-scheduling it for later this year
• if you are running out of medication, please ask the pharmacist to give you an additional amount. If they are unwilling to do that, please ask them to fax your physician’s office or the Family Health Team
• if you still need to see a healthcare professional, please phone your physician’s office or the Family Health Team
• if you have a cough, fever or difficulty breathing; please call first. DO NOT COME BEFORE CALLING
• if you are sick, stay at home if possible.
IF YOU HAVE A CONFIRMED APPOINTMENT WITH YOUR PHYSICIAN’S OFFICE OR THE FAMILY HEALTH TEAM:
• you will be questioned when you arrive
• you are to bring & wear your own mask
• you must stay 2m (6ft) away from other people
• avoid touching any surfaces
• Wash your hands often with soap and water, or use hand sanitizer
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth unless you have just washed your hands
• Cover your cough and sneeze with a tissue or into your arm, not your hand. Also, make sure to wash your hands afterward
If you are planning on traveling, the Government of Canada has posted advice here: www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/latest-travel-health-advice.html
For more information about COVID-19 click on the links below:
• Renfrew County Public Health Unit: https://www.rcdhu.com/
• Ottawa Public Health: www.ottawapublichealth.ca/en/public-health-topics/novel-coronavirus.aspx
• Public Health Agency of Canada: www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection.html
Finally, we are unable to provide you with any supplies (e.g. masks, gowns) since our supply is limited. We are unable to test you for the virus.
Update – May 11, 2020
Arnprior & District Family Health Team
As a Family Health Team, we have been monitoring the ever changing situation with COVID-19 (Corona Virus) since January with ongoing updates to our policies and procedures and the development of new and creative ways to screen, triage, assess and treat our patients. Patient and staff safety, and providing quality patient care have always been, and continue to be, our primary focus.
The rapidly changing screening recommendations, guidelines and the potential implications to staff and patients have led us to make some changes to the way we provide care. These changes are based on guidance from Ontario Public Health, Renfrew County Public Health, the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, and the Ontario Medical Association. They are consistent with measures being taken by other primary care sites across the province.
We want to clarify that:
- Our offices are still open and all our physicians and Family Health Team staff are still working to provide our patients with the care they need.
- To both protect our patients by ensuring patients with chronic health conditions are only coming into the office if it is essential and to reduce our in-person visits so that patients who do need to come can practice social distancing we have made some changes:
- All patients calling the office with a health care need are being screened in accordance with the requirements set out by Public Health.
- All patients must call the office to make an appointment.
- Patients whose appointment is not urgent will be offered a phone appointment with their health care practitioner (Physician/NP) or an appointment will be set up at a future date
- Phone appointments are being set up for more urgent health care needs. If after the phone appointment, the physician/NP identifies that the patient needs to come in for an in person clinic visit then that appointment will be set up.
- There may be situations where an in person appointment is set up immediately based on the patient’s need, i.e. an immunization for pneumonia.
- Patients coming to see their physician in person will be directed to come to either Entrance “A” or Entrance “B” and will be screened at that entrance.
- Our After Hours Clinic is still running Monday to Friday through phone appointments and in-person visits based on a physician’s assessment. We have actually been able to expand the number of patients assessed given the ability to assess patients over the phone
- Group programs have been cancelled per the recommendations from Public Health.
- Mental Health Supports and Resources: One to one counselling is ongoing by phone or video visits.
- Registered Dietitian and Respiratory Therapist Appointments are on-going by phone or video visits.
- Cardiac/Pulmonary Rehab: The program has been restarted using virtual technology & phone check-ins with clients. The Family Health Team will continue to seek out and implement new and effective ways to serve our patients.
- We will continue to post information on our web page and Facebook page to support our patients and the community at large on measures they can take to help them manage their own anxiety, depression or other health concerns. We appreciate everyone’s understanding and support as we move ahead in the coming days and weeks.
If there are questions about the COVID-19 (Corona Virus) and testing criteria you should go to Renfrew County District Health Unit’s web page at:
If patients require a doctor’s note related to the Corona Virus they can access a template note at: www.ottawapublichealth.ca/en/resources/Corona/COVID19-Sick-Note-updated-v2-2020-03-14.pdf